(March 22, 1979 Section 3, Page 9)

Act in Review
Two L.A. new wave bands
By Milt Petty

 Hard 'n' fast rock 'n' roll -- the type that even many sophisticated fans continue to label punk -- has not yet proven itself commercially viable. Consequently, the major record labels haven't exactly worn out their collective ballpoint pens in signing L.A.'s new wave bands to record contracts.

Several L.A. groups who cater to the young and outrageous, those who are looking for something new, continue to attract attention, however. Many of them -- the Dils, Germs and the Wierdos among others -- may prove too strange for all but a small retinue of disciples. But others, The Kats and The Zippers, appear to have the potential to appeal to both hard-core new wavers and a more inclusive audience.

Happily, these two groups appeared in tandem Tuesday night at the Fleetwood in Redondo Beach, opening for main attraction Ultravox. Both proved purveyors of a kind of rock so real and immediate that they would surely exist without benefit of the new wave movement.

The Kats.

The Kats are five Valley boys who are the unofficial house band at the Rock Corporation in Van Nuys.

Freddy Moore is their vocalist, songwriter and rhythm guitarist, brother Bobbyzio Moore is on tenor sax and assorted percussion, Dennis Peters sings and plays bass, Al Galles mans the drum kit, and Pete McRae is their lead guitarist.

Like Ireland's Boomtown Rats, the Kats have adopted an animal motif to express their post-teenage experience and street-life environment. Moore had time for only eight of his tunes but was able to show a clear thematic awareness that his life in the Valley is both separate from and entirely similar to that of his new wave colleagues. When Moore does their theme song, "The Kats," they become an interesting visual group as well.

Musically, the Kats have a lot in common with the spiritedness of the '50s sax-influenced groups stretching clear back to Bill Haley and the Comets; they've also digested the mid '60s first generation punk and have a clear understanding of the technical advances made in the '70s. The Kats are clearly a group to watch. They will play the Sweetwater in Redondo Beach Friday night....(The Zippers ...)

The Zippers.

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